What is split receipting and how do I do it?

Sometimes a charity acknowledges a donation with some sort of advantage. Common examples include providing a donor with complimentary tickets to a performance, or providing anyone who purchases a ticket to a fundraising event with a catered meal. In cases like these, where the patron is both making a gift and buying something, it is possible that only a portion of the amount of the donation would be eligible to be tax receipted. This is called split receipting.

Anytime a donor receives an advantage, the charity must deduct the value of the advantage – (click here for information on calculating fair market value) – from the amount of the donation and determine whether split receipting is necessary. The donation, less the advantage, must still represent a voluntary transfer of property by the donor to the charity.

Sometimes, even when a donor receives an advantage, split receipting is not necessary. It is important to remember the following:

  • The 80% rule – If the advantage the donor receives is valued at more than 80% of the amount of the donation, the CRA does not consider the donor as having intended to make a gift and the charity cannot provide a tax receipt at all.
  • The de minimis rule – Some advantages are too small to warrant split receipting. The de minimis rule dictates that if the value of an advantage (or combined advantages) does not exceed the lesser of $75 or 10% of the value of the gift, it is too minimal to have any effect on the amount of the gift. In these cases, a charity can issue a tax receipt for the full amount of the donation.

Visit this page on the CRA website for information on split receipting.